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Boy Competing Among Men

sportsnutzsportsnutz Registered User Posts: 12 New Member
edited September 2012 in Athletic Recruits
Anyone have experience with a late-puberty child competing in a sport where recruiting occurs early in the high school years? In lacrosse, my S's friends and teammates (freshmen and sophomores) are currently lining up invitations to showcase next summer! My son will be lucky if he is physically ready to showcase by his Junior year. Do we hop on the bandwagon when he is clearly undersized (but pretty skilled) or wait until we feel he is fully ready, which may not be for several years?
Post edited by sportsnutz on

Replies to: Boy Competing Among Men

  • fogfogfogfog Registered User Posts: 4,056 Senior Member

    Don't panic. Let him eat right, sleep enough...enjoy his sport and do well in his classes.

    What a difference a year will make in his growth....
    Sooo much happens between freshman and Jr year and then Sr recruiting....

    Your student needs to stay healthy,
    there is no way to know how he will feel in 2 yrs...
    you will want him to choose a school he loves even without the sport, in case injury or burnout takes him off the field.

    I don't know what you can do to hop on the bandwagon when NCAA restricts recruiting ...
    don't make mistakes that cost him eligibilty.
  • MaryOCMaryOC Registered User Posts: 519 Member
    Is your son being invited to the showcases, or do you simply want to secure spots for him ...to be sure he has the opportunity to perform and be assessed?

    In the NE, a lot of contact sport athletes (hockey, LAX, football) take advantage of "reclassifying" - where they transfer from their existing HS and repeat their most current academic year at a prep/day school. It not only affords them another year to mature and develop physically, but it also gives them an opportunity to compete at a higher level and to better position themselves academically for top tier colleges. It's not for everyone, but it's a growing alternative to doing a PG year, or redshirting as a freshman.
  • sportsnutzsportsnutz Registered User Posts: 12 New Member
    fogfog and MaryOC, I guess I am asking this question because S's teammates are currently asking club and HS coaches for recommendations to be considered for invites to "rising sophomore" and "rising Junior" showcases for next summer. We have always just done summer club lacrosse and instructional camps but a lot of young high school students have "moved on" from such camps and are only attending showcases in the hopes that they will be noticed by the swarms of coaches who are camped out on the sidelines. Personally, I think the state of lacrosse recruiting is insane! Many rising HS sophomores have already made verbal commitments to the top DI programs, including Johns Hopkins, Virginia, Duke, Notre Dame, UNC - to name just a few. And this is even before some of them have even played in a varsity game! Even some of the Ivies (Princeton, Cornell, etc) have received verbal commitments from several rising Juniors and perhaps even some rising sophomores (these are listed on Inside Lacrosse website). Many of these schools will have completed their recruiting classes early on and if a lax player is not recruited by Junior year, there are not a lot of spots left (at least at DI).

    As I said, we don't feel our son is physically ready to be competing with a lot of these guys or mentally ready to be looking at colleges! Specifically, I am concerned about him getting injured because he is very physical/aggressive but doesn't weigh much. At the same time, he doesn't want to be attending purely instructional camps where there are hardly any high school players and the skill level is not there. Also, the camps & showcases cost a lot of money so we want to choose wisely. I just wish the recruiting process for lacrosse was not so accelerated.

    MaryOC, I noticed that same thing around here - that some kids are switching schools/repeating a grade. We took our son out of school to travel for a year (he was young for his grade) so this would not be an option for us at this point.
  • fogfogfogfog Registered User Posts: 4,056 Senior Member

    One thing to know about sophmores verballing--It doesn't mean anything..Truly.

    Until a student is eligible--which a soph isn't, and until they are holding a NLI and able to sign--these early verbals get kids excited. The crushing thing is when the newest "flavor of the month" comes along and the kid who thought he was going to JHU etc doesn't get in etc.

    You student has time...right?
    Can you wait til mid school year to apply for summer?
    Our student competed at top level in chosen sport yet we didn't have to make a commitment/put down the $ til early spring.
  • DreadpiritDreadpirit Registered User Posts: 491 Member
    @fogfog - I agree with your advice about not panicing, different players will mature and progress and different times and anyone good enough to find a spot will find a spot.

    I don't know anything about boy's lax specifically, however, in other sports (women's soccer specifically), sophomore year commits and offers are very real, and there are very few instances of coaches pulling offers by the time NLI's are signed. Top programs finish their recruiting by Fall of Jr year (or sooner) and anyone looking for a spot (nevermind money) in one of the programs after then better be a national team player or the will be out of luck.
  • MaryOCMaryOC Registered User Posts: 519 Member
    Fog, the best mens' (and womens') LAX players verbal to top athletic and academic programs as HS sophpomores all the time... and it generally sticks, or is superceded by a better offer or offers by the end of Junior year. The same is true for M&W ice hockey. Here are some spring and prior LAX commitments for the class of 2014 men. I would be surprised if any of them fall through, or if these kids are left high and dry by NLI time.

    2014 Boys Lacrosse Commitment - ESPNHS Lacrosse - ESPNHS
  • MaryOCMaryOC Registered User Posts: 519 Member
    It's not like fencing, diving, golf, tennis, etc. D1 Lax commitments for rising Seniors have been locked down for months. Even D III is wrapping up for rising seniors about now:

    2013 high school boys' lacrosse NCAA verbal commitments - ESPNHS
  • MaryOCMaryOC Registered User Posts: 519 Member
    Sportsnutz, It may be that your son is not a D1 caliber player based on size-alone, and should be targeting DII or DIII programs. What does his HS or club coach say about his chances of playing at the next level? Whether you are prepared to hear it or not... it may be time to ask so your son can have realistic expectations for recruiting success.
  • sportsnutzsportsnutz Registered User Posts: 12 New Member
    Thanks for your responses, everyone. Mary, that is a good question but since he has not yet hit puberty and has years of growth ahead of him, it is hard to tell how big he will ultimately be (he shouldn't be too small based on our family) and what level of college lax is realistic. His coaches have told him to just keep working on his fundamentals so that when he catches up physically, he should be a real force. I think this is good advice but still makes it hard to figure out how to navigate the world of insanely accelerated lax recruiting where young players are bypassing skills camps and are going directly to recruiting showcases. We are sure he will end up somewhere appropriate (whether DI or DIII) but we were just wondering if anyone else has had a late-blooming child in one one of the accelerated-recruiting sports and could share their experience (I haven't noticed a lot of laxers/lax parents on the CC boards). I think the accelerated recruiting in certain sports is a real problem these days (on so many levels) and it does seem to limit some (not all, of course) opportunities for late-bloomers who aren't really ready to show their stuff in the early HS years.
  • fogfogfogfog Registered User Posts: 4,056 Senior Member
    What are the NCAA rules on recruiting for lacrosse? (not our k1's nor k2's current sport) From what I see on the chart No off campus contact is allowed. No OVs. Coaches cannot contact athletes. Athletes may at their own expense visit a campus. That means coaches Cannot recruit at camps during the summer without breaking NCAA regs.
    Sophmores don't have the GPA, the SAT etc and the minimum subject requirements completed for the Clearinghouse...
    and I think there is a restriction on recruiting before a certain date...and from what I read
  • fogfogfogfog Registered User Posts: 4,056 Senior Member
  • sportsnutzsportsnutz Registered User Posts: 12 New Member
    I don't know if I am posting this correctly but here's a timely article/video on the issue of early recruiting

    Early Recruiting: Coaches Thoughts | InsideLacrosse.com
  • 3togo3togo Registered User Posts: 5,233 Senior Member
    edited August 2012
    I'd also take those recruiting lists on web-sites with a grain of salt ... they are self-reported ... and I know of cases of people who reported themselves are recruited at the DIII level where I believe what really happened is the coach said something like ... "please apply and if you get accepted we'd love to see you at the tryouts" ... and the family tells everyone they were recruited. A couple "recruits" like these I know were then never on a roster at the schools that "recruited" them.
  • sportsnutzsportsnutz Registered User Posts: 12 New Member
    ^ I know it sounds ridiculous, but most of these commitments are the real deal and generally stick, as MaryOC pointed out. We have been following the top DI programs for years and sure enough the players that committed as sophomores are showing up on those same college rosters a few years later. I don't know as much about the DIII verbal commitments.

  • fogfogfogfog Registered User Posts: 4,056 Senior Member
    Sooo these kids and coaches are breaking the NCAA rules....?
    ...In talking recruiting off campus,

    And let's remember..the kids don't have the grades, SATs etc...the kid can want to go to a school
    however admissions admits..and grades, scores etc count

    and really so what if Billy Bob as a 15 yr old tells people he commits to go to a college ...2+ years later the rubber meets the road...

    You don't have to believe what we are saying here. CALL the NCAA and talk to someone.
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